Lee Peacock unlocked this game early in the second half with his fifth goal of the fledgling season.
It was very much an individual affair, a 30-yard speculative shot from the left of goal, but the direction was perfect as it winged into the top far corner.
Unlocked it might have been but this game was far from decided; that had to wait a further quarter of an hour until Hartlepool's Paul Robinson was sandwiched on the right-hand edge of the box.
As Richie Humphrey's prepared to flight over the free-kick Marco Gabbiadini began an incisive run from the far side of the box.
The veteran striker timed his run perfectly, arriving to head flick the equaliser well out of keeper Steve Phillips' reach.
Gabbiadini had come on for the second half in place of Kevin Henderson who had twice needed treatment for taking kicks in the opening half hour.
The draw left both sides unbeaten but newly-promoted Hartlepool took more out of the result.
They had a chance to leave with all three points when in added on time Phillips went up with both hands to grasp a long looping passback from Peacock.
There was a tangled free-kick on the six-yard line which ended with Matty Robson lifting a shot over the crowded goal area and well over the bar.
A tight first half had seen very few clear chances as these evenly balanced sides looked for a piece of luck to see them ahead.
The free running of Robinson and Humphreys always caused problems for City's back four and their centre-back Tony Butler had a particularly uncomfortable time giving away several many free-kicks for pushing.
But it was a push by City midfielder Joe Burnell which so nearly brought an opening goal.
The free-kick was just outside the d and central. Right-footed Gavin Strachan hit it well, stranding the keeper, but watching his shot rebound off the inside of a post.
The scouting reports on City had obviously highlighted the danger posed by their 21-year-old Australian Luke Wilkshire.
He was always close marked, but the former Middlesbrough player still found room to have a major influence.
As the first half moved into added on time he found Scottish striker Lee Miller with a sharp little ball to the 18-yard line.
Miller, a signing from Falkirk, got well behind his shot, but it was turned away by a magnificent save from Pools' Jim Provett.